A daily dose of vitamin D

Article 3 min

Milk is an excellent source of vitamin D, an essential nutrient often called the “sunshine vitamin” since it’s also produced by our bodies when our skin is exposed to UV rays.

By DFC - PLC, Communications Team

Natural sources of vitamin D

In addition to being produced by the skin through sun exposure, vitamin D is found in certain foods. However, there are only a few foods that are natural sources of vitamin D: certain fatty fish (sardines, herring, salmon, trout, mackerel), and egg yolk.

Glass of milk being poured

Vitamin D in milk

In Canada, milk is required to be fortified with vitamin D and is the main source of this micronutrient in our diets.  Vitamin D can also be found in some fortified beverages and yogurts.

The most recent national survey conducted by Statistics Canada shows that people who consume milk more than once a day show a higher blood level of vitamin D than those who do so less than once a day. This is an excellent reason to enjoy milk every day! 

Canadian recommendations

According to Health Canada, the recommendations for vitamin D are 600 International Units (IU) for adults aged 19 to 70 years and 800 IU for people aged 71 and older.

Chart showing the vitamin D intake for a variety of foods

Foods rich in vitamin D


Greene-Finestone et al. “Vitamin D status of Canadians as measured in the 2007 to 2009 Canadian Health Measures Survey.” statcan.gc.ca

Government of Canada. “Dietary Reference Intakes.” canada.ca

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